NYS PTA Unit in Westchester-East Putnam Region Receives National PTA 2021 Jan Harp Domene Diversity and Inclusion Award, which honors PTAs for outstanding achievement in the areas of diversity and inclusion

May 4, 2021 (Albany) – NYS PTA is excited to share that National PTA has honored the Chappaqua PTA in Westchester-East Putnam Region with the 2021 Jan Harp Domene Diversity and Inclusion Award, which recognizes PTAs for outstanding achievement in the areas of diversity and inclusion.

Chappaqua PTA is committed to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) by being intentional with their outreach to ensure that their leadership represents their community.

They also made a policy to include DEI training as part of their annual orientation for all Chappaqua PTA officers. Twenty Chappaqua PTA executive officers and 40 school-level PTA committee chairs participated in the course. Additionally, Chappaqua PTA established a DEI committee at each of their six schools and shared these committees’ updates and resources through their weekly PTA newsletters. Parents began to get involved with the DEI committees and established affinity meet-up groups, which increased communication and engagement between parents.

The Chappaqua PTA began the year fostering relationships with other organizations who share similar goals, including the Town of New Castle Committee of Race and Equity (CRE), the New Castle Holocaust and Human Rights Committee, the Chappaqua BOE CARES committee and student groups in the high school. These relationships will help the Chappaqua PTA be more responsive to the needs of the community and support their DEI work. 

Dana Platin, NYS PTA President offered, “We are so proud of the work of Chappaqua PTA and their commitment to their students, faculty and staff, community and diversity, equity and inclusion! There is no more important work a NYS PTA unit, council or region should be undertaking right now to support ALL children with ONE voice. It is our job as NYS PTA to Shine a Light on EVERY Child, and Chappaqua PTA is doing just that!”  

“We are honored to receive the Jan Harp Domene Diversity and Inclusion Award and proud to be part of the National and NYS PTAs, both leading by emphasizing diversity, equity and inclusion,” offered Kelly Mofield, Chappaqua PTA President.   “Starting our PTA DEI committee in the midst of national and local race discussions, we are especially appreciative of the BIPOC parents and allies in our community who selflessly stepped up to address difficult issues. We sincerely appreciate the National PTA’s acknowledgement for what has been hard work, and we recognize that we, like most other organizations, are just beginning to unpack implicit bias and learn how to be more antiracist one step at a time. We have a long way to go, but the CPTA remains up for the challenge and we will continue prioritizing diversity, equity and inclusion in our organization and school community, and hoping for a better tomorrow.”

“Chappaqua PTA’s work shows a meaningful and sustaining commitment to diversity and inclusion,” added NYS PTA Executive Director Kyle Belokopitsky. “We applaud their leaders and members for this commitment, and hope every NYS PTA unit, council and region empanels a Diversity, Inclusion, Equity and Outreach Committee and focuses acutely on critical systemic challenges and supports.”

Westchester-East Putnam Region (WEPR) Director Beth Sniffen offered, “WEPR is thrilled to have one of our Region’s units win this prestigious award!  The Chappaqua PTA is truly supporting EVERY child with ONE voice, and our region board is so proud of their work!”

The Jan Harp Domene Diversity and Inclusion Award is named after past National PTA President (2007-2009) Jan Harp Domene, who was dedicated to ensuring that families of all backgrounds felt welcomed in PTA and their school communities. The award recipients are selected by National PTA’s Diversity, Inclusion & Outreach Committee, which also works to ensure diversity and inclusion in PTA.